History of the Adria Hotel Prague
We have been here for you since 1912
Boasting a rich history dating back to the 14th century, our building is the oldest hotel on Wenceslas Square. According to the available records this whole side of the square and the block behind it was owned by the White Friars’ Monastery with the Church of Our Lady of the Snows. In the late 14th century with the aim of financing their very costly building programme the monastery is believed to have divided this land into plots for the construction of several fee-paying burgher houses. Initially, there were two structures on the present plot. However, records show that the property sold in 1540 was a single House No. 784 with a garden.
Over the centuries the building was owned by several proprietors and received numerous makeovers. In 1911 the “Blue Shoe” House was bought by the hotelier Emil Ročák, who carried out major renovation on the building converting it into hotel and restaurant facilities. During the reconstruction a restaurant hall was built in the basement containing a mezzanine floor with a gallery including a stage for cabaret and other similar show productions. Operating under the name of “NEPTUN”, the whole hotel building was approved for use in 1912.
At that time the building was used by several outstanding performers, such as Emil Artur Longen, Saša Rašilov and Jaroslav Marvan. Having been purchased by the Municipal Savings Bank in December 1918, the house was then sold on to František Tichý, grandfather of the current owners, on Oct. 24, 1919. Apart from being a hotelier and owner of Building No. 784, František Tichý was also a founder of Czech Cinematography and from 1918 he held the position of its Chairman.
Following the renovation in 1927 the hall was named after the “King” of Czech comedians and was called “Burian’s Theatre”. Vlasta Burian and his company performed here until 1928 and then the basement of the small hotel on Wenceslas Square was the place to go if you yearned to see the legendary duo of Czech theatre – Voskovec & Werich. When they moved their show a little further, into Vodičkova Street, the theatre was converted into the “Hollywood” cinema, which was in operation until 1930. In 1940 the State Heritage Office issued a certificate declaring House No. 784 a listed building and in 1951 it was seized by the national administration resulting in the entrance hall being changed into a Mechanika Co-operative workshop. In 1974 the basement premises of the front building were adapted becoming the seat of the Adria Student Club.
After the restitution and return of the building to the Tichý family in 1991, the ADRIA-NEPTUN company was set up and plans for the general renovation were prepared. The building work started in 1992 and the whole makeover reached the astronomical figure of CZK 150,000,000.00, having been funded exclusively by Czech capital sources. As a result, the Adria Hotel can continue granting the wishes of its guests and fulfil the legacy of František Tichý, the grandfather of the current owners. He used to run his hotel in the same way as we aspire to – providing a good lifestyle not only for him and his family, but also for the employees, people around the hotel and the hotel guests.